My PC keeps making a mouse click sound that happens when you open a folder or click a link on the internet. Thing is- it does it when nothing is open and there is no user activity.

It's almost like there's a ghost opening folders and clicking links in the background!

Hope someone can help?

  • 2
    Does this occur at regular intervals or completely randomly? How often does it happen?
    – oKtosiTe
    Mar 22, 2013 at 9:47
  • @oKtosiTe occurs completely randomly Mar 22, 2013 at 9:49
  • 1
    Could you add a list of active processes to your question? You can get such a list by running tasklist.exe in a command prompt (as an administrator).
    – oKtosiTe
    Mar 22, 2013 at 9:51
  • 1
    Check out your running processes/tasks, and also task viewer and see what can be disabled in MSCONFIG.In my opinion, the way to solve this is to kill 1 process/program at a time and wait to see if the problem stops or continues to know if the fault is resolved or not! It's a long winded approach, so I suggest if you do this, puttle the kettle on first!
    – Dave
    Mar 22, 2013 at 11:09
  • This is most likely not the answer, but I have heard of an office prank involving a program which adds random noises to the computer. If you work in an office with some techie pranksters, it's at least a marginal possibility.
    – roryok
    Apr 8, 2013 at 8:58

6 Answers 6


See if it's the sound set to play under Control Panel -> Hardware and Sound -> "Change system sounds", the 7th from the end of the list - "Start Navigation". One of the first things I do on a new install of Windows is set that "Start Navigation" to "None" at the lower left corner.

If that's the sound, but you prefer to leave it on, it's going to likely be a long process figuring out which process (as noted by @DaveRook above) is "navigating".


Using Process Monitor, I found that sdxhelper.exe was causing this on my computer in December 2018. This executable is a background process used for updating Microsoft Office and is cryptographically signed by Microsoft, so it appears to be legitimate.

In order to find this, I started process monitor, applied a filter to path containing ".wav" and let it run until the click happened again.

  • 1
    Showing just how useful ProcMon can be once again, great answer since this can be applied to the general case of finding the culprit.
    – ken
    Mar 8, 2019 at 5:21

One of my users had it. He was hearing the "C:\Windows\Media\Windows Navigation Start.wav" 2 times per second every time he opened some Office application, for example PowerPoint. His Office 365 password was out of sync with his Active Directory password. When he logged in to Office 365 with his current password then he didn't hear the "clicks" anymore.


Openvpntray was causing the issue on my computer I guess it is some sort of privacy/security software I have on here.

The kill processes till it stops method works... luckily it was probably only the 4th one I killed.

..I did a reboot and confirmed it by killing it first now to fix or remove it.

  • Yes for me openvpntray was definitely my culprit. Just rebooted and tried it first and it was it.
    – Steven D
    Dec 14, 2016 at 0:34

I had found this similar issue and found that it was bittorrent.exe client. Killing it stopped the sound.


I read another users answer and tried what they suggested with a similar application and it worked. My issue was UTorrent. All I did was close the application and the sound stopped instantly. So, if you have something like bit torrent or Utorrent, close it and see if that stops it. If not, then it could be a background app or there even some viruses that cause this to happen.

  • This is really a duplicate of MD. Mohiuddin Ahmed's answer.
    – fixer1234
    Oct 30, 2016 at 20:44
  • This duplicates another answer and adds no new content. Please don't post an answer unless you actually have something new to contribute.
    – DavidPostill
    Oct 31, 2016 at 9:08

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